Top 5 War TV Series to Stream on Netflix in November 2023
The most fascinating war dramas on Netflix.
There's no shortage of historical dramas on Netflix, but when it comes to war series, there aren't many in the streaming service's vast library.
The ones that are there, however, are excellent explorations of the wartime experience of horror and heroism. Here are the five masterpieces available in November 2023.
5. The Liberator (miniseries, Rotten Tomatoes score 69%)
Release date: November 11, 2020
Based on the best-selling book of the same name by Alex Kershaw, legendary screenwriter and filmmaker Jeb Stuart (the original Die Hard, The Fugitive with Harrison Ford, and Vikings: Valhalla, to name a few!) has delivered a unique animated series, The Liberator. The story follows real-life World War II veteran Felix L. Sparks, nicknamed Shotgun, and his famously heroic 157th Infantry Regiment. Sparks' multi-ethnic combat unit fought alongside the Allies in the Italian Campaign through brutal battles for over 500 days.
The animation style (the so-called Trioscope technique, which fuses live action and animation) may not appeal to everyone, but the story is definitely worth a watch.
4. Black Earth Rising (miniseries, Rotten Tomatoes score 79%)
Release date: September 10, 2018
Black Earth Rising is not your typical war drama, but the series is a great reminder that horrific war crimes continue to occur in contemporary history. Created by filmmaker Hugo Blick, the series follows a young woman living in Britain who survived the horrific 1994 Rwandan genocide. She is now a legal investigator who pursues the war criminals responsible for the massacre of the Tutsi people, as well as the moderate Hutu and Twa.
Some have criticized the show for the lack of exploration of the mentality of the people who lived through such dreadful events, but by most accounts it is a gripping and well-executed story.
3. Band of Brothers (miniseries, Rotten Tomatoes score 97%)
Release date (HBO): September 9, 2001
Release date (Netflix): September 15, 2023
Of course, we couldn't help but mention the magnificent classic created by Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg! Band of Brothers follows members of the 101st Airborne Division, chronicling the camaraderie, valor, and tragedies of the soldiers who fought side by side from the beaches of Normandy to the end of World War II. As of September 15, the series is not only available on Max, but also on Netflix, so it's a great excuse to revisit this masterpiece.
2. Five Came Back (miniseries, Rotten Tomatoes score 98%)
Release date: March 31, 2017
The docuseries, produced by Steven Spielberg, narrated by Meryl Streep and written by Mark Harris (based on his book of the same name), focuses on five 20th century American filmmakers, John Ford, William Wyler, John Huston, Frank Capra and George Stevens, who volunteered to go to World War II to document the events. Their experiences and contributions to a shared historical memory are discussed by prominent contemporary filmmakers.
Viewers have praised the series for its insightful and engaging exploration of U.S. Army propaganda and the lives of heroic directors.
1. War Sailor (miniseries, Rotten Tomatoes score 100%)
Release date: April 2, 2023
The events follow two ordinary Norwegian sailors on a merchant ship who are confronted with the outbreak of World War II. Their families are waiting for them at home in Bergen, but Norway is inaccessible due to the occupation. Trying to survive and one day reunite with their loved ones, the Norwegian merchant fleet became one of the decisive factors that ultimately contributed to the Allied victory.
Many have noted the slow pacing of the series, which may be discouraging to some viewers, but that doesn't make War Sailor any less interesting, deeply conveying the harrowing experience of the agony of war.